April 20, 2014
Women and men approach business differently. It’s a fact – not a judgement – and it stands to reason. Without getting into the gender debate (which this article is not about) simply how we are built neurologically dictates that we have different ways of dealing with both opportunity and challenges. And importantly, there are strengths of both genders.
But let’s look at a key area where women commonly find the behaviour of business a bit challenging.
As (on the whole) the more naturally nurturing of the genders, women can find it a bit tough to ask for what they are really worth. Instead, there can be a tendency to undersell services and then over commit time or resources.
It can feel tricky – and uncomfortable – asking for money. It is in one sense stating to the world that you are good at what you do and therefore worthy of the associated fee. While as business women we may know this ourselves, it is not always easy to make such a proclamation to the world. It takes confidence and a fair bit of it.
But valuing yourself is essential. The only way a business can grow and you can achieve what you set out to do, is to be appropriately paid for the services you provide. The key thing is to listen to your instinct but never give away your services for less than they are worth.
So the next time you have to put a dollar amount to what your new or existing client is looking for, take the time to think about what you bring to the table; the years of experience; knowledge and skill. What in your mind is the appropriate and market relevant value of your being involved? Remember that when it comes down to the dollars and cents.
And also keep in mind, that not all clients will be a good fit for your business. If you undersell based on a client’s lack of perceived value, are you entering into a good business relationship? At the end of the day it’s all about fair-exchange.